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Graduate Education @ MIT

For more than a century, MIT graduate programs have provided ideal environments for advanced study by faculty and students working together to extend the boundaries of knowledge.
Traditionally a leader in engineering graduate education, the Institute has also attained national prominence for its doctoral programs in mathematics and the physical and life sciences. In addition, top-ranked graduate programs in economics; political science; linguistics; science, technology, and society; architecture; urban studies; and management have broadened the spectrum of graduate education at MIT.
Graduate students may pursue any of the following degrees: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Doctor of Science (ScD), Engineer, Master of Science (SM), Master of Engineering (MEng), Master of Architecture (MArch), Master in City Planning (MCP), and Master of Business Administration (MBA).
A significant resource for graduate students is the opportunity for cross-registration at Harvard and Wellesley, and joint degree programs with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Other study opportunities are also available at Brandeis, Tufts, Boston University, and the Graduate Consortium in Women’s Studies at Radcliffe.
The Institute has a single faculty that is responsible for both undergraduate and graduate instruction. Each department exercises a large measure of autonomy for its graduate programs, under general guidelines established for the Institute as a whole. The administration of graduate education rests with the president, the provost, the chancellor, the dean and associate dean for graduate students, and the Committee on Graduate School Programs, whose members include a faculty member from each department and program offering graduate degrees, and two representatives from the Graduate Student Council.
Graduate Students Office
The Graduate Students Office supports graduate students and graduate administrators throughout the Institute, complementing each department’s graduate administration. GSO comprises the Office of the Dean for Graduate Students; the International Students Office; and the Graduate Student Council, consisting of elected representatives from all departments and graduate residences, as well as at-large members.
Some Grad Facts
The admissions process for graduate programs at MIT is decentralized. Applicants apply directly to the academic department or degree-granting program of interest.
Graduate students are supported with fellowships (24 percent), research assistantships (40 percent), and teaching assistantships (10 percent). Twenty-six percent receive some other form of support or no support.

There is no cap on the number of graduate students admitted to MIT. Departments admit as many as they can support based on their RA, TA, and fellowship resources, as well as the number of faculty available to advise on research.Graduate students first outnumbered undergraduates in 1980. Today, graduate students make up 60 percent of the total student population.

There were 6,184 graduate students enrolled at MIT in the fall term of 2004. Thirty-five percent were international students. Thirty-five percent were housed on campus, approaching the Institute’s goal of 50 percent.

Persons interested in taking graduate courses may apply for special student status. A special graduate student is one whose intended program of study is essentially graduate in nature, but who is not a candidate for an advanced degree.

Twenty-nine percent of students who complete a Master of Science degree at MIT choose to continue graduate study, while 63 percent enter the work force. For Master of Engineering graduates, the numbers are 21 percent and 75 percent, respectively; and for MBA graduates, 1 percent and 96 percent. At the doctoral level, 52 percent of MIT’s PhD graduates go on to industry or government positions, while 18 percent accept academic positions and 30 percent pursue postdoctoral research.

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